Three-wheeled electric cargo hauler with hot-swap batteries to debut in LA
Riding on the back of a US$400 million investment from Luxembourg's GEM Global Yield, startup Biliti Electric is looking to bring the GMW Taskman three-wheeled electric delivery vehicle to the US, debuting at AutoMobility LA on November 17.
Gayam Motor Works was set up by brothers Raja and Rahul Gayam, and launched its first electric three wheeler in 2015. The company has since sold its electric vehicles in more than 15 countries, most recently opening offices in Portugal to launch the GMW Taskman last-mile delivery EV there. And this is the model that Biliti Electric –run by Rahul – is bringing to the US market.
The single-seater electric rickshaw can be had in a number of configurations, with the one making its debut in Los Angeles reportedly able to get up to 30 mph (48 km/h), carry a payload of 1,500 lb (680 kg), and can roll for 110 miles (177 km) for every 3.5-hour charge of its Li-ion batteries. But Biliti also adds modular battery swapping into the mix, with GMW's SmartSwapp system, which promises to get drivers on the road again in under a minute – assuming that there's a SmartSwapp station handy.
A companion mobile app running on the driver's smartphone will help locate the nearest battery-swap hub. There are no doors here, which will doubtless benefit couriers, though the driver is afforded some protection from the elements courtesy of a full windshield and solid roof. The vehicle rolls on scooter-sized wheels, with the front fender also home to a headlight that follows the road in the turns.
We've seen a similar proposition before of course, when Piaggio launched the Ape electric tuk-tuk in 2019. But that vehicle was destined for the Indian market only whereas the Taskman is making its way around the globe, so to speak, already having clocked some 20 million cumulative miles delivering 12 million packages for the likes of Amazon, Walmart, Ikea and Zomato.
There's no word on pricing for the US model, though the cost of the Taskman destined for the Portuguese market has been set at €9,990 (which converts to about US$11,500). Biliti Electric will be showing off the GMW Taskman in the West Atrium of the Los Angeles Convention Center from November 17.
Source: Biliti Electric